Saturday, March 10, 2012

Count Up the Ice

I LOVE to play board games at home, but I also enjoying using them in my classroom. In addition to encouraging cooperation, turn taking and a variety of other social skills, I find I can often use the games to work on math and literacy skills. So, every Friday, I am going to post a Friday Game Night post, giving tips on how to use a particular board game in your classroom. Here’s this week’s Friday Game Night Tip:



Don’t Break the Ice – Part 1 (Math)

For each of these variations on Don’t Break the Ice, put a label or a small piece of masking tape on each piece of “ice”. On each piece of masking tape, write a single digit number.

1. Add them Up – As students play Don’t Break the Ice, remind them that they point is to get the LEAST amount of ice to fall.  As each person takes a turn tapping the ice, they will collect all the ice that falls after their tap.  Once all the ice has fallen, the students will add up all of the digits on the ice they have collected.  Award one point for the first student to get the correct answer and one point for the person with the lowest total sum.  Repeat until one person scores 4 points.

2. Line them Up – As students play Don’t Break the Ice, remind them that they point is to get the LEAST amount of ice to fall. As each person takes a turn tapping the ice, they will collect all the ice that falls after their tap. Once all the ice has fallen, the students will line up all of the digits on the ice they have collected, from smallest to largest. Award one point for the first student to get their digits in order.   Repeat until one person scores 3 points.


3. Make the Smallest Number – As students play Don’t Break the Ice, remind them that they point is to get the LEAST amount of ice to fall. As each person takes a turn tapping the ice, they will collect all the ice that falls after their tap. Once all the ice has fallen, the students will use all of the digits on the ice they have collected, and create a number with ALL of the digits. Award one point for the first student who is able to make the smallest number. Repeat until one person scores 3 points.


4. Sorting your Ice - As students play Don’t Break the Ice, remind them that they point is to get the LEAST amount of ice to fall. As each person takes a turn tapping the ice, they will collect all the ice that falls after their tap. Once all the ice has fallen, the students should sort their digits by into assigned categories (odd and even, greater than 5 and less than 5, prime and composite, etc.).  You can have the categories listed on index cards, or you can allow the students to create their categories, and then explain their sort to their peers. 

I hope some of these suggestions will allow you to use Don't Break the Ice in a new, interesting way in your classrooms. Do you want other game suggestions for your classroom? Click HERE for more suggestions on how to use games in your classroom. Keep playing games and watch your kids learn!


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